Ex-Cardinals HC Kliff Kingsbury pulls out of Raiders job, reportedly a favorite to become Commanders' new OC

Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury watches his team play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019, in Tampa, Fla. The Buccaneers won the game 30-27. (Jeff Haynes/AP Images for Panini)
Former Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury isn't going to Las Vegas. (Jeff Haynes/AP Images for Panini)

The last time we heard from the Las Vegas Raiders, they were reportedly expected to hire former Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury as their next offensive coordinator under promoted head coach Antonio Pierce.

Something changed in the two days since then.

Kingsbury has withdrawn from consideration for the job due to a breakdown in negotiations, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Saturday, citing the coach's agent. Now, Kingsbury is reportedly a favorite for the Washington Commanders' offensive coordinator gig.

"Consideration" feels like the wrong word choice in this situation, as Kingsbury's job with the Raiders was seemingly a done deal. The contract hadn't been signed, but both sides saw it as a formality, according to The Athletic's Vic Tafur. Las Vegas viewed Kingsbury as the "most creative" of the candidates, and the organization was excited to welcome him, Tafur added.

It looks like the Commanders will host a return to the NFL for Kingsbury, who spent a season as an offensive analyst at USC after he was fired by the Cardinals last year.

(Amber Matsumoto/Yahoo Sports)
(Amber Matsumoto/Yahoo Sports)

Kingsbury reportedly interviewed with the Chicago Bears, Pittsburgh Steelers and Philadelphia Eagles for coordinator jobs. The Eagles ultimately went with Los Angeles Chargers offensive coordinator Kellen Moore, while the Steelers picked former Atlanta Falcons head coach Arthur Smith. It doesn't seem likely that Kingsbury will join the Bears either, as they hired Seattle Seahawks offensive coordinator Shane Waldron last month.

Las Vegas had an alternate option as well, and he might still be available. News of the Raiders landing on Kingsbury came after NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported that the team interviewed UCLA head coach Chip Kelly twice.

Kelly could be inclined to go elsewhere. The former Oregon Ducks head coach was also recently reported to be a “potential candidate” for the offensive coordinator position with the Commanders, who announced Thursday they had hired Dan Quinn as their new head coach.

Of the two coaches looking to make an NFL return from the Pac-12 during the current hiring cycle, one would think Kelly has an edge over Kingsbury.

Kelly, 60, took the Eagles' head coaching job in 2013 and led the Eagles to back-to-back 10-6 seasons in his first two campaigns. His tenure, which saw the Eagles win the NFC East in his first year, ended in Week 16 of his third season after the Eagles went 6-9.

Kingsbury, 43, spent four seasons with the Cardinals, compiling a 28-37-1 record. They reached the playoffs one time and never won in the postseason. Arizona posted a 4-13 record in Kingsbury's last season.